Chevrolet SEMA Truck Concepts Suck: COLORADO SPORT and SILVERADO ‘Toughnology’

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It is almost SEMA time of year again – when  OEMs can roll out the models they wish they had on their showroom floors, highlight future trends, and showcase accessory collections.

A little bit of all three with the just-announced Colorado Sport and Silverado Toughnology.

These truck concepts are pretty lame and more than a little disappointing, to be honest. They are transparent marketing exercises for the base models, and not the cool upgrade shown by even SCA and the Lingenfelter Reaper.

Chevy trucks should be ashamed of themselves. What a pathetic lack of effort, bordering on incompetence, to call these “Concepts”.


Chevrolet COLORADO SPORT Concept

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GearOn™ system highlights lifestyle accessories for new midsize truck

DALLAS – With a pair of mountain bikes mounted and a weekend’s worth of gear stowed, Chevrolet’s Colorado Sport concept is ready for adventure. It was unveiled today at the State Fair of Texas, demonstrating the lifestyle-oriented versatility of Chevy’s all-new midsize pickup.

“It’s not just mountain bikes, but just about any passion you can name, from kayaking, fishing, dirt bikes and more,” said Tony Johnson, Colorado marketing manager. “It’s a truck for those who need the versatility of a pickup to support their work and lifestyle interests, but don’t need a full-size truck to do it.”

The 2015 Colorado is available in extended- or crew-cab models, with a choice of a 2.5L four-cylinder or 3.6L V-6 engine. The Colorado’s V-6 is the segment’s most efficient, with an EPA-estimated 27 mpg on the highway (2.5L 2WD models), and the most powerful, at 305 horsepower (3.6L). It also boasts the segment’s highest trailering rating – 7,000 pounds, when properly equipped.

The Colorado’s interior is tailored to meet the needs and expectations of today’s midsize truck customers. With a quiet cabin and interior designed for thoughtful functionality, the Colorado offers features common to cars and crossovers, including Chevy MyLink with a built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot and segment-first applications of Lane Departure Warning and Forward Collision Alert.

At the back of the Colorado, proven Chevrolet truck features offer conveniences not found in competitors’ vehicles, including an easy lift-and-lower tailgate and rear bumper assist steps, which eases cargo loading.

The Colorado also offers the innovative and adjustable GearOnTM Accessory System   that allows customers to stow larger items such as bikes and kayaks above the bed, leaving room for smaller gear, such as coolers and tents, inside the bed. The GearOnTM System is at the heart of the Colorado Sport concept’s package of lifestyle and personalization accessories. Additional accessories on the truck – all available from Chevy dealers – include:

  • Assist steps

  • Cargo rings

  • Splash guards

  • Tiered storage

  • Bike rack

  • Cargo divider

  • Wheel lip moldings.

Accessories were at the heart of Colorado’s development, giving customers options to match its capabilities with integrated functionality and designs to complement its distinctive styling. GearOnTM accessories are designed, engineered, tested and backed by Chevrolet, and many can be ordered with the vehicle and included in the price. The cost of added accessories can be factored into financing for the Colorado, and all vehicle accessories are covered by the new-vehicle warranty.

The Colorado Sport also wears unique concept wheels that are being evaluated for future production.

Prices for the 2015 Colorado start at $20,995 for a four-door extended cab model with a 200-horsepower four-cylinder engine. Chevrolet supports Colorado owners with two years or 24,000 miles (whichever comes first) of scheduled maintenance.

 Chevrolet SEMA COLORADO SPORT and SILVERADO ‘Toughnology’


Chevrolet SILVERADO Toughnology Concept

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High-strength steel body structure supports capability, reduces weight, cost

DALLAS – High-strength steel makes the Chevrolet Silverado lighter, stronger and more efficient than the conventional carbon steel used in most vehicles. Those attributes are highlighted in the simulated raw steel appearance of the new Silverado Toughnology concept.

The concept is also a showcase for Silverado’s connectivity technologies – including all-new OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot – as well as accessories and performance parts available through Chevrolet dealers.

“The technology of advanced high-strength steel makes the Chevrolet Silverado stronger, lighter, more capable and more efficient – and that’s exactly what the Toughnology concept represents,” said Jeff Luke, executive chief engineer. “During the Silverado’s development, we evaluated all materials and chose those that would provide the best strength to support capability while still delivering a strong value to customers.

“High-strength steel had clear advantages and is a contributor to the overall package that made Silverado the 2014 North American Truck of the Year.”

High-strength steel, which is pressed while still in molten form, can be up to 30 percent lighter than carbon steel with the same strength. It offers significant mass savings at a lower cost than aluminum, which helps keep down the overall vehicle cost. Lower weight translates to greater efficiency and capability for truck owners.

The 2015 Silverado 1500 with the EcotTec3 5.3L V-8 engine is EPA-estimated at 23 mpg on the highway and offers a maximum trailering capacity of 11,200 pounds, per newly adopted SAE J2807 Recommended Practices. With the available 6.2L V-8 engine and all-new eight-speed automatic transmission, the Silverado’s trailering capacity increases to 12,000 pounds.

The Silverado Toughnology concept wears most of its high-strength steel under the skin, just like every production model. Approximately 67 percent of each Silverado cab is constructed of the durable material, including stronger ultra-high-strength steel. It is used in the A-pillars, B-pillars, rockers and roof rails, as well strategic sections on the interior structure. Ultra-high-strength steel is used in areas of the rocker panels and underbody to help improve performance in crashes.

The 2015 Silverado 1500 crew cab model earned a 5-Star Safety Rating – the highest rating – in government crash testing.

Lightweight strength extends to the Silverado’s pickup box, where the floor is made of roll-formed steel. It’s more durable than the conventional stamped steel used by other manufacturers and it’s lighter than the material used for stamped parts, further reducing vehicle weight.

The Silverado also strategically uses aluminum, including the hood, which saves 17 pounds over a conventional stamped steel hood.

“We put the best materials to use where they’ll do the most good,” said Luke. “Every panel, inside and out, is designed to support the Silverado’s capability and carry on its position as America’s most dependable, longest-lasting truck.”

Concept features

The Toughnology concept is striking for its stripped-down appearance. The paint job mimics the look of raw, unpainted steel and is accented with steel molecule graphics. The hood – the only visible metal exterior component that isn’t steel – is painted black.

Additional black and chrome exterior accents complement the raw steel appearance, along with Chevrolet Accessory 22-inch wheels mounted on off-road tires. The special content includes:

  • Chevrolet Accessories grille insert

  • Tubular assist steps

  • Soft, folding tonneau cover

  • Washable carpet bedliner

  • Fender flares

  • Tinted headlamp lenses.

Performance capability upgrades include a performance exhaust system and upgraded performance brakes. Under the hood is a performance air intake system on its 5.3L engine rated at 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque.

Inside, the Silverado Toughnology wears LTZ trim, including heated, leather-appointed bucket seats. It also features the available rear-seat entertainment system and Silverado’s latest connectivity features, including OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot and a wireless phone-charging mat that recharges phones via a magnetic inductive charge.

The available OnStar with 4G LTE and built-in Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. The hotspot is on whenever the vehicle is on and comes with a three-month/three-gigabyte data trial (whichever comes first). 4G LTE is the most current and fastest mobile data network – 10 times faster than 3G and 100 times faster than OnStar’s previous generation hardware.

Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4.9 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at SEMA gif

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About The Author

Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of, an innovative and rapidly expanding automotive news magazine. He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank. Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)